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KUALA LUMPUR (May 5): AT Systematization Bhd (ATS), through its wholly-owned unit AT Precision Tooling Sdn Bhd, has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Shanghai JieNaXin Mech & Elec Equipment Co Ltd (JNX) to ease the shortage of three-ply face masks.

In a statement today, ATS said both companies would collaborate in producing high precision tooling parts for melt-blown non-woven fabric mask making machines, such as spinneret, as well as localisation of the spinneret.

Spinneret is a device used to extrude a polymer solution or polymer melt to form fibres, a process known as melt-blown process.

According to ATS, these fibres are used as part of the key ingredient for the middle layer of a three-ply surgical mask which is the main filter to prevent the Covid-19 virus from entering into our respiratory system.

Under the agreement, ATS said JNX would be responsible for evaluating and proposing the design of the different types of the spinneret, as well as research and development for the localisation of the spinneret.

“ATS will make available its group's manufacturing facilities for the production and manufacture of the spinneret,” it said.

ATS managing director Choong Lee Aun said the company had identified the shortage of spinneret worldwide as the root cause of the shortage and higher production cost of the three-ply face masks.

“We will produce and market the spinneret for Malaysia and Asia region, and we want to ease the shortage of this spinneret which makes the filter for face masks, so that everyone can afford the three-ply face masks,” he said.

Choong expects to see a huge surge in demand for three-ply face masks, as people around the world tend to be more hygiene-conscious before the Covid-19 vaccine can be developed and fully deployed worldwide.

“The vaccine solution may take a few years to happen,” he added.

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http://www.theedgemarkets.com/article/systematization-partners-jnx-ease-3ply-masks-shortage

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